Reflection: Real World Applications The Rise of the Dog: Day #1 of 2 - Section 4: Closure: What did we learn? Where do we go from here?


How do I support my students to compose, communicate, and evaluate a clearly stated, evidence-based, compelling argument?

A claim without evidence is merely an opinion. What is paramount to developing a sense of scientific literacy is the ability to wade past the various claims that possibly explain some natural phenomenon and focus first and foremost on the evidence. Then, when weighing all of the evidence and pressing it down to reveal only the most legitimate and reliable data, can a claim be properly chosen and justified.

So it starts, just like any new learned skill, with a series of scaffolded steps.

Identifying the skill, describing its features, modeling how to utilize it, providing a structure or framework for its application, and employing it in authentic, rigorous, and relevant contexts for students to practice on their own.

I think that I have satisfied most, if not all, of these criteria and what I am seeing emerge is the fruit of these planning and instructional labors. The student featured here provides not the minimal ten evidences but fifteen. At this point, their notes are a collection of facts and observations that include some higher quality (more insightful) notes and others that provide for context. I want students to attend to the storyline and gather as much rich detail as possible. Some facts relate to theories related to their evolution and our study of them, others detail the myth and lore of dogs, and still others detail the widespread reach of dogs across the globe.

In this sense, more data is better since the sorting process will happen later.

  Real World Applications: What do you know? How do you know it? What evidence supports your thinking?
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The Rise of the Dog: Day #1 of 2

Unit 6: 6) Exploring Change ("The Theory of Natural Selection")
Lesson 8 of 15

Objective: The prevailing theory explaining how man's best friend came to be has been recently challenged. Students will determine which of theory best matches the evidence.

Big Idea: The rise of the domestic dog has been been both rapid and well-researched but the theory is still a work in progress.

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